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2012 Most Influential Women Honoree: Kim Blevins

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For Kim Blevins, teaching is neither a sedentary position nor a passive role in the community. As the 2011 Missouri Secondary School Teacher of the Year, Blevins says she is practiced in pushing teenagers out of their comfort zones, encouraging her students to take risks and face their fears of reading and writing.

“I push them to get out of the boring, safe, daily routine and be creative in their writing, in their goals, and in their schoolwork,” Blevins says.

Blevins has been a public school teacher for the last decade, working for the Mount Vernon R-V School District since 2004. She has worked since 2008 at Mount Vernon High School, where she now teaches English and journalism.

Blevins says her mission is to help every one of her students move forward.

“Some find out they can write. Some figure out a career path. Some learn more about who they are as a person. Some are inspired to excellence,” she says.

Beyond the classroom, Blevins is an active member of Ozarks Writing Project, an affiliate of the National Writing Project, dedicated to improving the teaching of writing and learning.

As the professional development coordinator for Ozarks Writing Project, Blevins has coordinated nine free professional development workshops in the last two years.

Blevins also is a frequent presenter at Write to Learn, a state conference for language arts teachers. In the last three years, she has presented four workshops to hundreds of teachers, and next year, she’ll lead an all-day workshop.

On the civic front, Blevins makes use of class time to channel students’ talents to help nonprofits. Blevins created a team competition for her students, requiring them to develop advertising campaigns for local nonprofit organizations many of which used them for advertising material.

“I believe involvement in activities that make our cities a better place to live are important,” Blevins says. “My civic affairs are centered on students and helping them to become involved in their community.”

Click here for full coverage of the 2012 Most Influential Women.


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